Ricoh has added a budget-friendly camera to their lineup of 360 options. The Ricoh Theta SC is designed to make 360 photography more accessible with a simpler interface and a lower price point.
For still images, users won't see much of a gap between the Theta SC and the Theta S. Both cameras use a pair of 12 megapixel sensors measuring at 1/2.3" and both use dual f/2 lenses. Internal software stitches the data from both sensors together to create simple 360 images. The same 8 GB of storage will keep up to 1600 images internally without an SD card.
Users will likely notice the SC's price in the video options, however. The Theta SC only shoots in 720p. Stretch that resolution around into a 360 view and video quality will be rather low. That footage is also recorded at a very choppy 15 fps and clips are limited to five minutes.
The budget version also skips the HDMI port, eliminating the possibility of live streaming.
The camera does keep much of the same body style intact, however, keeping the same odd shape and dual camera set-up and adding a few more color options to the mix.
If you are only looking for 360 still photos, the Ricoh Theta SC is an excellent choice with much of the same hardware that the pricier Theta S holds. If you want video or live streaming however, you'll likely to want to wait to save up for the more advanced model, since the camera's budget price starts to show in lowered video quality.